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PSATTF recovers 6 vehicles, arrests 3 in Lakewood area emphasis

Yesterday, the Puget Sound Auto Theft Task Force (PSATTF) led a multi-agency operation to recover stolen vehicles and arrest vehicle theft suspects in the Lakewood area of Pierce County. In total, six vehicles were recovered and three arrests were made.

The following vehicles were recovered during yesterday’s operation:

Ford F-450 (unoccupied)
Stolen from the Tacoma area. Located in the 7200 block of 150th St SW in Lakewood.

Hyundai Accent (unoccupied)
Stolen from the Tacoma area. Located in the 8100 block of 83rd Ave SW in Lakewood.

Kia Rio (unoccupied)
Stolen from the Tacoma area. Located near the intersection of San Francisco Ave SW and Springbrook Ln SW in Lakewood.

VW Passat (unoccupied)
Stolen from the Tacoma area. Vehicle had been impounded by a towing company.

Nissan Sentra (unoccupied)
Stolen from the Parkland/Spanaway area. Vehicle had been impounded by a towing company.

Chevy Impala (unoccupied)
Vehicle was abandoned and heavily damaged. It is likely stolen but hasn’t been reported yet. It was towed for safekeeping.

Lincoln MKX (occupied)
Stolen from the Tacoma area. Detectives located the vehicle near Bridgeport Way SW and I-5. With assistance from the Washington State Patrol’s airplane, Smokey, they followed the vehicle to an apartment complex in the 6400 block of S 12th St in Tacoma. Two juvenile suspects ran inside an apartment and refused to come out. Officers couldn’t positively identify them so they couldn’t take further action at the scene. Detectives towed the vehicle and will fingerprint it. The investigation is ongoing.

In addition to the recovered vehicles, two occupied stolen vehicles fled from officers. Since motor vehicle theft is not a pursuable offense, they couldn’t chase after them.

Detectives made several arrests during the emphasis. They located a 58-year-old hit-and-run collision suspect and took him into custody. They also spotted a 30-year-old woman who was removing license plates from a vehicle that turned out to be stolen. She was arrested for warrants. Finally, a 39-year-old male suspect was arrested for firing at an occupied vehicle right in front of detectives.

We want to thank Lakewood Police Department’s Special Response Team and Washington State Patrol’s Aviation Unit for participating in the operation.

“Auto thefts are a regional issue,” said Sgt. Jeff Carroll of the Puget Sound Auto Theft Task Force. “We have detectives from multiple agencies within King and Pierce Counties working together to aggressively investigate prolific thieves and get people their stolen vehicles back.”

Tips to protect your vehicle:
– Remove or hide all valuables
– Lock your car
– Don’t leave keys or fobs inside
– Don’t leave your vehicle running unattended
– Use anti-theft devices (alarm, kill switch, steering wheel lock)
– Park in well-lit areas

The Puget Sound Auto Theft Task Force (PSATT) is dedicated to investigating prolific auto theft offenders through multi-agency cooperation in King & Pierce Counties. The PSATT is funded through a grant from the Washington Auto Theft Prevention Authority (WATPA).